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Canton moves forward with spring projects

Fri, Apr 18th, 2014
Posted in Canton Government

The Canton City Council took a walk down the street to the old liquor store building at the beginning of the April 9 meeting to take a look at the current state of the building and discuss plans for rebuilding now that the weather is improving.

The ceiling has been stripped down to the rafters exposing the old stamped tin ceiling above. The City plans to save and reuse much of the ceiling as the building is transformed into the new government center. The interior walls have been removed leaving an open floor space for the City to design their new quarters.

A sketch of the proposed floor plan was shared and shows office space and a restroom for the city clerk in the rear part of the building and chambers for the city council in the front. The entrance will also be moved from the front to the side of the building to allow for a handicap accessible entrance. The City will be discussing the project with contractors to start making arrangements for the work to be done.

The council also approved plans for updates to the Welcome to Canton sign. A preliminary diagram and an estimate by The Treehouse for updated landscaping around the sign were provided and discussed. The updates include new brick and the addition of a lower tier around the flag pole, as well as updated plants and flowers. It was agreed that having some inset pots which could easily be removed and changed would aid in maintenance and help to add some seasonal color.

The light for the Welcome to Canton sign will need to be replaced this summer and the sign itself will be pressure washed and painted. The City will remove the old landscaping materials and work on the updated landscaping will begin as soon as the area is cleared.

Nick Prestby, owner of the Canton Pub, was present and discussed the economic development of Canton with the city council. Prestby discussed several ideas, stating he would like to see something prosper in Canton. He brought up the fact that several local towns now have a Dollar General or are discussing the idea of bringing one to their towns and asked about the possibility of Canton doing the same. Mayor Donivee Johnson pointed out that Canton does not have an EDA (Economic Development Authority), as it was previously determined to be cost prohibitive for Canton, and that this type of land purchase and development must go through the EDA. The City of Canton works with the Fillmore County EDA and it was agreed by the council that there would be no objection if Prestby wanted to approach the Fillmore County EDA to open a discussion about development options for Canton.

Mr. Prestby also requested access to power for a sign he has set up by the post office. It was discussed that the sign was once hooked to the street lights and likely could be again.

Canton Day Off

Councilor Cindy Shanks updated the council on the plans for the Canton Day Off celebration in August. She announced that PayPal will be available on the website for online payment of registration fees for the cook-offs and 5k race and for the purchase of t-shirts. Visit the website at for more information. Also keep your eyes open for posters and information cards posted around the area.

The city is still seeking food vendors and volunteers for the occasion. If interested, please contact the City Clerk’s office at (507) 743-5000.

The Adopt-a-Planter idea caught on quickly. Of the nine available planters, only three are still available to adopt. Responsibilities of adopting a planter include planting and maintaining the plants throughout the summer. The city will get the planters filled with dirt and prepared for planting as soon as weather permits and is asking that plants be in by Memorial Day weekend. The adopter can fill their pot with the plants or flowers of their choice and is encouraged to embellish their planter for the Canton Day Off celebration. There will be a cash prize for the best decorated planter that weekend. If you are interested in adopting a planter, contact City Clerk Lolly Melander at (507) 743-5000. Planters are adopted on a first come, first served basis.

Other business

The City of Canton has served Canton resident Danny Whalen with notice that he has 30 days to clean up his property, remove all miscellaneous debris, vehicles and hazardous materials lying around and to bring it into compliance with the city junk ordinances. If he fails to comply after 30 days, he will be ticketed every day that he is not in compliance. Concerns from the public regarding the hazards of Whalen’s property were brought to the council’s attention prompting action.

Damage to a city bench caused by Whalen when moving snow with his skid loader over the winter was also discussed. It was decided that the City will determine whether the bench can be fixed and if not, Whalen will be billed for the new bench for Main Street.

The water plant is thawed and everything is working again. Town engineer Jon Nordsving stated that he could use a plate tamper and would have multiple uses for it around the city. The cost was estimated to be around $900-$1,000. It was also noted that it costs a lot to rent one or to hire someone to do the work. A motion to look into the purchase of a plate tamper was approved.

The city council will meet with the Canton Historical Society and members of the community on April 14 to discuss restoring the Depot. It will be a brainstorming session for the future use of the building.

A liquor license was approved for the Mira Hall wedding on May 10.

The next regular meeting of the Canton City Council is on Wednesday, May 14, at 7 p.m.

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